Waiting for the corona vaccine to be declared ‘halal’ in Indonesia

One week before the launch of the large-scale corona vaccine purchased from China in Indonesia, the country’s highest council of Muslim scholars has to decide whether the vaccine is in accordance with Islamic principles.In Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim-majority country, the 3 million doses obtained from the Chinese pharmaceutical company Synovik Biotech are due to be vaccinated across the country on January 13, but before that it is ‘halal’. Controversy has arisen.There have been similar controversies over vaccination in Indonesia before. Including a controversy that erupted in 2018 when the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) banned measles vaccine in its fatwa.”Our goal is to issue a fatwa (whether it is halal or haram) before the first injection of the vaccine,” said Mati Arntavati, a MUI official who issues halal certificates for food and medicine.Indonesia is one of the worst-affected countries in Southeast Asia, where authorities are relying on vaccines to help the country recover from health and economic crises. The government will wait for the MUI’s decision, an official said.To do boost acceptance,. Joko Widodo has said he will be the first person to be vaccinated next week. Dicky Budman, a researcher at Griffith University in Australia, said authorities needed to make halal certification transparent in order to gain public trust.According to the New York Times, Chinese company Sinowek has assured Indonesia’s state-owned pharmaceutical company BioPharma that no pig ingredients have been used in the development of the vaccine. The company confirmed receiving the statement but said it was up to the MUI to decide whether to grant it halal status.Sinowek, on the other hand, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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